Beat, match or miss, stocks are still losing ground.

In theory when a company reports good earnings, their stock is supposed to move higher. If you only match estimates you should expect to see a small decline. Unfortunately, if you miss estimates your stock is likely to get a serious haircut. That is not what is happening this cycle.

It appears that regardless of what a company reports, the majority of stocks are moving lower afterwards. For the Q2 cycle, a stock that misses earnings has averaged a 5.5% decline. A stock that matched earnings is rewarded with a 2.4% average loss. A stock that beats on earnings has been rewarded with a -1.1% decline. Obviously, there are exceptions to these numbers but those are the averages.

That tells us that investors are nervous ahead of the normally weak August/September period and that strong earnings expectations are already priced into the market. It also suggests that there is limited upside from this point. If investors were excited about earnings they would be chasing stocks higher. Unfortunately, they are not.

The Dow declined -66 points today and there were no Dow stocks reporting. The majority of Dow stocks were negative because investors were fleeing the index before the 5 Dow stocks that report before the open on Tuesday. Even a strong gain by Apple and CAT failed to energize the Dow.

Tuesday will be a critical point in the current rally. If the five stocks, CAT, DD, MCD, MMM and UTX do not post gangbuster results, the Dow could decline below support at 21,465. The Dow is already the weakest index.



The S&P gained 14 points on Wednesday and a total of 13 points for the week. That does not say much about momentum on the S&P. We had a one-day rally for the week. The index gave back nearly 3 points on Monday and is clustering in the 2,470 range. Support is 2,450 and resistance 2,475 so the index is holding its gains despite the negative days.


The Nasdaq remains the market leader with a nice gain to push through resistance at 6395-6400 and close at a new high. Google disappointed after the close despite beating on earnings. Shares were down -33 but closed the session at -25. That could put a negative bias on Tuesday's open but the Nasdaq futures have rebounded from -26 at the open to only -3 as I type this. The S&P futures are flat. Support is 6,365. Strong earnings from the rest of the FAANG stocks could push the index close to 6,500 by the end of the week except we have a Fed announcement on Wednesday that could cause some cloud cover.



There are 11 Dow stocks reporting this week so we are guaranteed some volatility. We just do not know if it will be positive or negative. There are more than 180 S&P companies reporting as well. This is the busiest week of the Q2 cycle.


The economic calendar is uneventful with the exception of the Fed announcement on Wednesday. The other reports in green are material but they are not expected to be market movers unless they miss estimates significantly.


In theory, the market should be positive this week. The Tuesday before a Fed announcement is normally positive. Assuming the Fed does not do anything stupid to upset the market, the Facebook and Amazon earnings should keep a positive bias under the market.

The challenge is what happens next week. With more than half the S&P reported by Friday and two-thirds of the Dow stocks, the post earnings depression phase could begin to take its toll. This is the worst earnings cycle of the year for post earnings depression. August volumes are typically very low as traders try to squeeze in some more vacation before the kids go back to school. Interest in the market is weak. Everyone will begin to raise cash in hopes of buying a Sept/Oct dip.

While this is not a guarantee, it is the historical trend. Lately the market has not been conforming to the historical trends but that could change at any minute. I am just informing readers so you can be prepared if this scenario comes to pass.

Enter passively, exit aggressively.

Jim Brown

Send Jim an email



NEW DIRECTIONAL CALL PLAY

HAS - Hasbro - Company Profile

Hasbro, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as a play and entertainment company. The company operates through U.S. and Canada, International, and Entertainment and Licensing. The U.S. and Canada segment markets and sells action figures, arts and crafts, and creative play products; electronic toys and related electronic interactive products; fashion and other dolls, infant products, play sets, preschool toys, plush products, and sports action blasters and accessories; and vehicles and toy-related specialty products, as well as traditional board games, and trading card and role-playing games primarily in the United States and Canada. The International segment markets and sells both toy and game products primarily in the European, the Asia Pacific, and Latin and South American regions. The Entertainment and Licensing segment engages in consumer products licensing, digital gaming, and movie and television entertainment operations. The company sells its products to wholesalers, distributors, chain stores, discount stores, drug stores, mail order houses, catalog stores, department stores, and other traditional retailers, as well as Internet-based e-tailers. Hasbro, Inc. was founded in 1923 and is headquartered in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Company description from FinViz.com

The company reported earnings on Monday of 53 cents, that rose 30% and beat estimates for 46 cents. Revenue of $972.5 million rose 11% but missed estimates of $973 million. Shares were crushed for a 9% drop. Seriously, earnings rose 30%, revenue 11% and the stock was killed.

The CEO said most of their products performed well but the Super Soaker and Baby Alive dolls were weaker than expected. Sales in the UK and Brazil were weak due to economic conditions. Sales in the U.S. and Canada rose 16%. He said Q2 was always their weakest quarter but Q3/Q4 should be strong because of new toys for Star Wars and My Little Pony movies.

Analysts were quick to run to Hasbro's defense for obvious reasons. There was no rational justification for a 9% decline. We are going to buy the dip. I am making the initial stop loss a little wider than usual to try and dodge any remaining volatility on Tuesday.

Buy Oct $110 call, currently $2.30, initial stop loss $98.65.


If there is a trade you would like me to consider or you have comments on this newsletter please click the email link below.

Jim Brown

Send Jim an email



Current Portfolio


Open Positions

Check the graphic below for any new stop losses in bright yellow. We need to always be prepared for an unexpected decline. Any items shaded in blue were previously closed.




Current Position Changes


BABA - Alibaba
The long call position was entered at the open on Tuesday.

VAR - Varian Medical
The long call position was stopped at $104.25 on Thursday.


Original Play Recommendations (Alpha by Symbol)


ADBE - Adobe Systems - Company Profile

Comments:

No specific news. Shares closed at a new high on Thursday and are holding the gains.

Original Trade Description: July 10th.

Adobe Systems Incorporated operates as a diversified software company worldwide. Its Digital Media segment provides tools and solutions that enable individuals, small and medium businesses, and enterprises to create, publish, promote, and monetize their digital content. This segment's flagship product is Creative Cloud, a subscription service that allows customers to download and install the latest versions of its creative products. This segment serves traditional content creators, Web application developers, and digital media professionals, as well as their management in marketing departments and agencies, companies, and publishers. The company's Digital Marketing segment offers solutions for how digital advertising and marketing are created, managed, executed, measured, and optimized. This segment provides analytics, social marketing, targeting, advertising and media optimization, digital experience management, cross-channel campaign management, and audience management solutions, as well as video delivery and monetization to digital marketers, advertisers, publishers, merchandisers, Web analysts, chief marketing officers, chief information officers, and chief revenue officers. Its Print and Publishing segment offers products and services, such as eLearning solutions, technical document publishing, Web application development, and high-end printing, as well as publishing needs of technical and business, and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) printing businesses. The company markets and licenses its products and services directly to enterprise customers through its sales force, as well as to end-users through app stores and through its Website at adobe.com. It also distributes products and services through a network of distributors, value-added resellers, systems integrators, independent software vendors, retailers, and OEMs. Company description from FinViz.com.

Adobe reported earnings of 81 cents that beat estimates by 4 cents. Revenue of $1.77 billion increased sequentially by 5.4% and 26.7% over the year ago quarter. Analysts expected $1.73 billion. Subscriptions accounted for 84% of Q2 revenues, up 36.9% from the year ago quarter. Revenues from digital media solutions rose 29% to $1.21 billion. Annualized recurring revenue rose $312 million to $4.56 billion. Mobile data transactions rose to 57% or all transactions.

Adobe is firing on all cylinders. They ended the quarter with $4.93 billion in cash and $901 million in receivables. They guided for the current quarter to revenue of $1.815 billion and that exceeded estimates for $1.80 billion. They guided for earnings of 72 cents to $1 and analysts were expecting 79 cents.

Expected earnings Sept 19th.

Shares had been in a solid uptrend until the recent Nasdaq decline. Unfortunately, options are expensive so this will have to be a spread.

I try not to recommend a stock in one newsletter than I am also recommending in a different newsletter. In this case, Adobe had the farthest earnings date and allowed us to avoid all the July earnings reports from other stocks. Plus this is a short-term position rather than long term.

Position 7/11/17:

Long Oct $150 call @ $4.20, see portfolio graphic for stop loss.
Short Oct $165 call @ $.93, see portfolio graphic for stop loss.
Net debit $3.27.



BABA - Alibaba - Company Profile

Comments:

Alibaba is in talks to acquire BigBasket, the largest online grocer in India. This would give Alibaba a major foothold in the rapidly expanding grocery business in India. This sector is undergoing a major upheaval from local family farms and farmers markets to modern supermarkets. This would be a good move for Alibaba and I am surprised Amazon is not in there bidding up the price.

Original Trade Description: July 17th.

Alibaba Group Holding Limited, through its subsidiaries, operates as an online and mobile commerce company in the People's Republic of China and internationally. It operates Taobao Marketplace, an online shopping destination; Tmall, a third-party platform for brands and retailers; Juhuasuan, a sales and marketing platform for flash sales; Alibaba.com, an online wholesale marketplace; Alitrip, an online travel booking platform; 1688.com, an online wholesale marketplace; and AliExpress, a consumer marketplace. The company also provides pay-for-performance and display marketing services through its Alimama marketing technology platform; Taobao Ad Network and Exchange (TANX), a real-time bidding online marketing exchange in China; and data management platform through TANX for marketers to execute their campaigns with proprietary and tailored data. In addition, it offers cloud computing services, including elastic computing, database, storage and content delivery network, large scale computing, security, and management and application services through its Alibaba Cloud Computing platform; Web hosting and domain name registration services; payment and escrow services; and develops and operates mobile Web browsers. The company provides its solutions primarily for businesses. Company description from FinViz.com

Alibaba is the poor investor's Amazon. With shares at $135, the options are at least reasonable but not cheap. Alibaba is growing as fast or faster than Amazon and tries to copy everything Amazon does.

When the company reported earnings for the last quarter at 63 cents, they missed estimates for 68 cents. Revenue of $5.6 billion easily beat estimates for $5.2 billion. Other than the earnings miss it was a solid quarter with ecommerce up 47% and cloud computing up 102%. Digital media growth was up 234%. Mobile MAUs rose from 493 to 507 million. That is important because 90% of China's ecommerce occurs on a mobile device.

The company announced plans to buy back $6 billion in stock over a two-year period.

Earnings August 18th.

Shares dipped on the earnings miss then spiked on the guidance to $125.50, which was a new high. After a little more than two weeks of post earnings consolidation, shares returned to that $125.50 level and closed at a new high.

There was an analyst day in early June that kicked the stock up to another level with a $10 gain. The company guided for 45% to 49% revenue growth in this year and analysts were only expecting 37%. Alibaba said it is targeting $1 trillion in gross merchandise volume in 2020. Alibaba's Singles Day promotion is 40 times larger in sales than Amazon's Prime Day. JP Morgan initiated coverage with an overweight rating and $190 target. MKM partners raised the price target to $177. Pacific Crest raised their price target to $160 from $137. Needham raised their target to $155. The Benchmark Company is targeting $175.

In late June, Mott Capital said Alibaba could be worth $210 on a fundamental basis.

In early July, Alibaba announced the Alexa clone called Genie X1, which will be available to the first 1,000 people for a one-month trial. The cost will be $73 during this live test and it only speaks mandarin.

Alibaba is far ahead of Amazon in the retail store concept. Watch this video and you wil know where Amazon is headed. Alibaba Stores

This is currently a short-term position in Option Investor.

Position 7/18/17: Short Oct $175 call @ $2.01, see portfolio graphic for stop loss.
Net debit $5.33.



FB - Facebook - Company Profile

Comments:

No specific news but Facebook closed at a new high today. With earnings on Wednesday after the close I am recommending we close the position at the open on Tuesday. It has been a good run!.

I expect FB to soundly beat estimates and possibly even spike higher. However, with $8 in gains, we need to be prudent rather than risky.

Original Trade Description: June 12th.

Facebook, Inc. provides various products to connect and share through mobile devices, personal computers, and other surfaces worldwide. Its solutions include Facebook Website and mobile application that enables people to connect, share, discover, and communicate each other on mobile devices and personal computers; Instagram, a mobile application that enables people to take photos or videos, customize them with filter effects, and share them with friends and followers in a photo feed or send them directly to friends; Messenger, a messaging application to communicate with people and businesses across platforms and devices; and WhatsApp Messenger, a mobile messaging application. The company also offers Oculus virtual reality technology and content platform, which allow people to enter an immersive and interactive environment to play games, consume content, and connect with others. Company description from FinViz.com.

Facebook also blew away earnings estimates and they are growing earnings at the fastest rate of any of the FAANG stocks. They have multiple revenue streams and sites like Instagram and WhatsApp that are just starting to accelerate earnings. They said Instagram had reached 50,000 advertisers. Facebook's problem is they do not have enough page views to monetize despite the 1.9 billion users. They have more advertisers than they have space.

Earnings August 2nd.

Facebook was setting new highs last week until Friday's flash crash. The two day decline knocked the stock back from $155.50 to $144.50, and exactly to support from the May 17th bottom. This "should" be the perfect spot to open a new position on FB. The two day decline has deflated the option premiums and once the tech sector begins to rebound, the FAANG stocks should be leaders again because of their earnings growth rates.

Position 7/3/17:

Long Aug $155 call @ $4.30, see portfolio graphic for stop loss.

Previously closed 6/29/17: Long Aug $155 call @ $4.45, exit 3.75, -.70 loss.



HAIN - Hain Celestial - Company Profile

Comments:

No specific news but shares are rocketing higher and well over out $40 strike. Our patience has paid off. I am tightening the stop loss to capture gains if this rocket runs out of fuel. Maxim upgraded the stock to a buy with a $50 price target.

Original Trade Description: March 20th

The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. manufactures, markets, distributes, and sells organic and natural products in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Europe. Its grocery products include infant formula; infant, toddler, and kids foods; diapers and wipes; rice and grain-based products; flour and baking mixes; breads, hot and cold cereals, pasta, condiments, cooking and culinary oils, granolas, granola bars, and cereal bars; canned, chilled fresh, aseptic, and instant soups; Greek-style yogurt; chilies and packaged grains; and chocolates and nut butters, as well as plant-based beverages and frozen desserts, such as soy, rice, almond, and coconut. The company's grocery products also comprise juices, hot-eating, chilled and frozen desserts, cookies, crackers, gluten-free frozen entrees and bars, frozen pastas and ethnic meals, frozen fruits and vegetables, cut fresh fruits, refrigerated and frozen soy protein meat-alternative products, tofu, seitan and tempeh products, jams, fruit spreads and jelly, honey, marmalade, and other food products. In addition, it provides snack products, such as potato, root vegetable, and other vegetable chips, as well as straws, tortilla chips, whole grain chips, pita chips, puffs, and popcorn; specialty teas, including herbal, green, black, wellness, rooibos, and chai tea lattes; ready-to-drink beverages comprising organic kombucha and chai tea lattes; personal care products consisting of skin, hair and oral care, deodorants, baby care items, acne treatment, body washes, and sunscreens; and poultry and protein products, such as turkey and chicken products. The company sells its products through specialty and natural food distributors, supermarkets, natural food stores, mass-market and e-commerce retailers, food service channels and club, and drug and convenience stores in approximately 70 countries worldwide. Company description from FinViz.com

We played Hain before back in the fall. Basically, they have not filed their quarterly reports since last May because of a review of accounting procedures. They have suffered over the last year and have reportedly spent $20 million in the complete accounting review for years past and a review of their procedures. They are facing class action suits and SEC probes but none of these things will have a lasting impact.

They are facing a new deadline of May for their reports or they will be in default with their lenders. While they will not say when they will file the back reports, they continue to assure investors there was no wrongdoing and these types of corporate autopsies for prior years take time.

They are so undervalued compared to their peers and their historical norms, it is silly not to have a long position. Once they file the reports this will all be behind them.

I am recommending we buy the August $40 call and forget about it. At $2 it is not a lot of money and they could quickly return to the $50s once they file the reports.

Update 6/23/17: After a year of accounting research, HAIN said there was no need to restate earnings. The problems they found were so minor they were not worth the effort. They implemented some additional controls and promoted James Langrock to EVP and CFO. They discussed plans to cut costs by $350 million over the next three years and said they will buy back $250 million in stock.

They also reported earnings of 33 cents that missed estimates for 52 cents. They guided for the current quarter to earnings of 40-43 cents. For the full year they guided for $1.19-$1.22 and revenue of $2.84-$2.86 billion.

Shares were very volatile on Friday with all the headlines in the press release and the CEO's appearance on CNBC. On Monday shares rose $6.4% to $33.63. We have an August $40 call and we actually have a chance of it regaining value. I was hoping for more of a spike on the earnings release but the earnings miss overshadowed the positive news about the restatement. Since there is nothing wrong with the company or the past financials and it was crushed from $57 to $31 on the initial restatement warning, we could see funds begin to buy it again.

Update 7/2/17: After waiting for three months, we finally got lucky. Hain is under attack by Engaged Capital with a 9.9% stake and they are pushing the company to sell itself and to replace 7 of the 8 board members. Shares spiked 8.5% on Friday and probably have farther to go. Engaged has had several successful attacks recently against other companies and even though they are small they are aggressive. Shares popped to $39 and we are holding the $40 strike.

Update 7/10/17: The Amazon deal for Whole Foods made the Hain position a lot more interesting. Whole Foods is Hain's largest customer. Amazon can explode Hain's sales or even acquire Hain to further reduce costs and market reach. BMI Capital said at the least it will boost sales and with Engaged Capital (10% stake) demanding the company sell itself, there may be interest in actually doing that. Other potential acquirers include Pepsi, Campbell, Hormel, General Mills, Kraft Heinz, Nestle and Unilever. There is no shortage of candidates that could be sniffing around.

Position 3/21/17:

Long Aug $40 call @ $1.97, see portfolio graphic for stop loss.



RH - RH Inc - Company Profile

Comments:

Citigroup cut RH from buy to neutral. Deutsche Bank cut them from buy to hold with an $80 price target. Shares are chopping around at the $75 level while investors try to decide what to do.

Original Trade Description: June 12th.

RH, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a retailer in the home furnishings market. The company offers products in various categories, including furniture, lighting, textiles, bathware, decor, outdoor and garden, tableware, and child and teen furnishings. It provides its products through its retail galleries and Source Books, as well as online through rh.com, rhmodern.com, restorationhardware.com, rhbabyandchild.com, rhteen.com, and waterworks.com Websites. As of January 28, 2017, the company operated 85 retail galleries, including 50 legacy galleries, 6 larger format design galleries, 8 next generation design galleries, 1 RH modern gallery, and 5 RH baby and child galleries in the United States and Canada; 15 Waterworks showrooms in the United States and the United Kingdom; and 28 outlet stores. The company was formerly known as Restoration Hardware Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to RH in January 2017. Company description from FinViz.com

RH reported earnings of 5 cents that beat estimates for 4 cents. Revenue of $562.1 million beat estimates for $560.4 million. So far, so good. However, they guided for Q2 earnings of 38-43 cents and analysts were expecting 53-75 cents. No, that is not a misprint.

The company said it was ditching its prior merchandising model and switching to a membership model in order to make the company Amazon proof and enhance the customer experience. They are moving away from the highly promotional retail experience with constant sales and discounts and moving to a membership model where the focus will be on the customer experience. "Members" will pay $100 a year for the ability to shop in a high quality store where they will find only high quality merchandise.

Shares crashed 26% to $42 on the guidance but the rebound has been amazing. Apparently investors like the concept and the idea of a "Costco" model but in high quality products.

Earnings August 31st.

Update 7/17/17: RH announced on Friday they had completed a $700 million share repurchase authorization. This was on top of the $300 million repurchased in Q1. In 2017, they have repurchased 20.22 million shares or 49.6% of the outstanding shares. Currently there are 21.12 million shares outstanding.

They reaffirmed guidance for revenue in the range of $595-$610 million and earnings of 43 to 50 cents. They anticipate significant free cash flow for the remainder of 2017 and plan to pay down their highest interest debt by yearend. They expect to completely retire the existing second lien term loan.

Position 6/13/17:

Long August $55 call @ $2.70, see portfolio graphic for stop loss.



THO - Thor Industries- Company Profile

Comments:

No specific news. Shares fighting new resistance at $105.50.

Original Trade Description: June 19th.

Thor Industries, Inc., through its subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, and sells recreational vehicles, and related parts and accessories primarily in the United States and Canada. It operates through Towable Recreational Vehicles and Motorized Recreational Vehicles segments. The company offers travel trailers under the Airstream International, Classic Limited, Sport, Flying Cloud, Land Yacht, and Eddie Bauer trade names, as well as Interstate and Autobahn Class B motorhomes; gasoline and diesel Class A and Class C motorhomes under the Four Winds, Hurricane, Chateau, Challenger, Tuscany, Axis, Vegas, Palazzo, Synergy, Quantum, Compass, Gemini, A.C.E, Alante, Precept, Greyhawk, and Redhawk trade names; and fifth wheels under the Redwood and DRV Mobile Suites trade names. It also provides conventional travel trailers and fifth wheels under the Montana, Springdale, Hideout, Sprinter, Outback, Laredo, Alpine, Bullet, Fuzion, Raptor, Passport, Cougar, Coleman, Kodiak, Aspen Trail, Voltage, Cameo, Cruiser, ReZerve, Sunset Trail, Zinger, Landmark, Bighorn, Sundance, Elkridge, Trail Runner, North Trail, Cyclone, Torque, Prowler, Wilderness, Shadow Cruiser, Fun Finder, Stryker, Sportsmen, Spree, Venom, Durango, SportTrek, Connect, Sportster, Sonic, Jay Flight, Jay Feather, Eagle, Pinnacle, Seismic, AR-One, Launch, Autumn Ridge, Travel Star, Highlander, Roamer, and Open Range trade names. In addition, the company offers equestrian recreational vehicle products with living quarters under the Premiere, Silverado, Ranger, Laredo, Trail Boss, and Trail Hand trade names; lightweight travel trailers and specialty products under the Camplite and Quicksilver trade names; and Class A motorhomes under the Insignia, Aspire, Anthem, and Cornerstone trade names, as well as provides aluminum extrusions and specialized component products. Company description from FinViz.com

In a weak economy Thor is kicking butt. The company reported earnings of $2.11 which rose 41.6% compared to estimates for $1.87. Revenue of $2.02 billion rose 57% beat estimates for $1.96 billion. Operating cash flow rose 26.2% and gross profits rose 45.5%.

Sales of towable travel trailers rose 52.6% and sales of motorized RVs rose 78.7%. There was no bad news in the Thor report.

Estimated earnings date September 4th.

With the company posting record earnings the stock spiked from $94 to $104 on June 6th. When the market dipped, shares only pulled back to $102. Over the last week they have returned to $106 and Monday's close was a four-month high.

Winnebago (WGO) reports earnings this week and that is going to remind investors how strong Thor's report really was. I believe we will see Thor break through that post earnings resistance and head back to the highs at $115.

Position 7/3/17:

Long Sep $110 call @ $1.90, see portfolio graphic for stop loss.

Previously closed 6/29/17: Long Aug $110 call @ $3.20, exit $1.80, -1.40 loss.



VAR - Varian Medical Systems - Company Profile

Comments:

Varian declined just enough to stop us out using the tight stop loss. With earnings on Wednesday we would have had to exit tomorrow anyway.

Original Trade Description: July 2nd.

Varian Medical Systems, Inc. designs, manufactures, sells, and services medical devices and software products for treating cancer and other medical conditions worldwide. It operates through two segments, Oncology Systems and Imaging Components. The Oncology Systems segment provides hardware and software products for treating cancer with radiotherapy, fixed field intensity-modulated radiation therapy, image-guided radiation therapy, volumetric modulated arc therapy, stereotactic radiosurgery, stereotactic body radiotherapy, and brachytherapy. Its products include linear accelerators, brachytherapy afterloaders, treatment simulation, verification equipment, and accessories; and information management, treatment planning, image processing, clinical knowledge exchange, patient care management, decision-making support, and practice management software. This segment serves university research and community hospitals, private and governmental institutions, healthcare agencies, physicians' offices, oncology practices, radiotherapy centers, and cancer care clinics. The Imaging Components segment offers X-ray imaging components for use in radiographic or fluoroscopic imaging, mammography, special procedures, computed tomography, computer aided diagnostics, and industrial applications. It also provides Linatron X-ray accelerators, imaging processing software, and image detection products for security and inspection purposes. This segment serves original equipment manufacturers, independent service companies, and end-users. In addition, the company offers products and systems for delivering proton therapy; and develops technologies in the areas of digital X-ray imaging, volumetric and functional imaging, and improved X-ray sources. The company was formerly known as Varian Associates, Inc. and changed its name to Varian Medical Systems, Inc. in April 1999. Varian Medical Systems, Inc. was founded in 1948. Company description from FinViz.com.

Drugs are not the only opportunity to rid yourself of a terrible disease. Varian produces multiple products for discovering and targeting cancer. They are the sector leader in imaging and radiation therapy.

Varian reported Q1 earnings of 89 cents that beat estimates for 88 cents. Revenue of $655 million beat estimates for $643 million. They guided for full year earnings of $3.56-$3.64 per share.

Earnings July 26th.

On May 6th, the company announced a "game-changing treatment platform" to combat the cancer challenge. (their words) The new Halcyon system is an entirely new device that "simplifies and enhances virtually every aspect of image-guided volumetric intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT). This new treatment system is designed to expand the availability of high quality cancer care globally and help save the lives of millions more cancer patients." The new system requires only 9 steps compared with the 30 treatment steps required by current generation equipment. "Halcyon is well suited to handle the majority of cancer patients, offering advanced treatments for prostate, breast, head & neck, and many other forms of cancer." Press Release

The company demonstrated the new device to packed crowds at the ESTRO 36 conference in Vienna. Shares spiked $4 on the announcement.

In late May, Varian announced it was going to install its first Proton Therapy System in Thailand. The first one in a country is always the hardest. The order will be booked in this quarter's earnings.

Varian had a nearly $30 gain since January. The market volatility over the last week blunted that rally and given us a buying opportunity. There is decent support at $101.

Position 7/3/17:

Closed 7/20/17: Long August $105 call @ $2.70, exit $2.35, -.35 loss.



Prices Quoted in Newsletter

At Option Investor, we have a long-standing policy prohibiting the editors and staff from actually trading the individual recommendations in order to conform to SEC rules concerning trades.

The prices quoted in the newsletter are the end of day prices in most cases.

When discussing fills or stops the prices quoted are the bid/ask at the time the entry trigger or exit stop is hit. This is NOT a price that someone on staff actually got using a live order.

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